From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/China
China (Traditional Chinese: 中國; Simplified Chinese: 中国; Hanyu Pinyin: Zhōngguó (help·info); Tongyong Pinyin: Jhongguó; Wade-Giles (Mandarin): Chung1kuo²) is a cultural region, ancient civilization, and made up of two nations in East Asia. It is one of the world’s oldest civilizations, consisting of states and cultures dating back more than six millennia. The stalemate of the last Chinese Civil War has resulted in two nations using the name China: the communist People’s Republic of China (PRC), commonly known as “China,” which controls mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau; and the democratic Republic of China (ROC), commonly known as “Taiwan,” which controls Taiwan and its surrounding islands. See Political status of Taiwan.
China is one of the world’s oldest continuous civilizations. It has the world’s longest continuously used written language system, and the source of some of the world’s great inventions, including the Four Great Inventions of ancient China: paper, the compass, gunpowder, and printing.